I feel I haven't paid that much attention to the blog lately, mostly because between a full time job, three volunteer efforts (two soldier support groups and walking dogs at the shelter), and having just added a new one, things are busy!
A little up date:
Olive is adopted! She just passed her one week anniversary of doing well in the new home, with Dan the Fireman and Catherine the Nurse. The first two days were difficult. Olive had been in the shelter for so long (years) and since we didn't know her history before that, she was panicked when Dan and Catherine brought her home. She only knew them for 24 hours and they were the things in life she knew most at that moment. None of her usual friends or surroundings were around. In retrospect I would have brought her to the house myself at least once to get her acclimated. I think that would have helped because she would have been familiar. It would not have assuaged the fact that Olive was by that point bonded to me so my leaving her anywhere, or her going with other people while I stood back, would have been hard. This process included an application, a reference check, a home check (an hour away each way), and the adoption itself.
But Dan, Catherine, and Olive all hung in there. I asked the shelter trainer to speak with them, and now things are good and calm. One of the things suggested to them was to keep her crated when she acted up, and overnight. They really didn't want to, because they wanted to see this dog that had been crated for so long finally free, but Olive was used to being in a smaller contained space. It calmed her and they began to create her new normal by gradually leaving her out longer and longer. Now, just over a week later, she is just beginning to sleep in her regular dog bed, outside the crate, overnight, and she is getting used to her routine, which calms dogs.
So, it is a good ending. I miss her, and it kills me to think she misses all of us and might feel abandoned, but I know the fact she is in a home will sink in and she will know she is loved by them.
Here's a pic:
Today, I am pulling Dixie, another dog that has been at the shelter for three years. You may wonder why the shelter has dogs that long. Not all dogs are there that long; some get out quickly. Others languish. We have a low visibility shelter with no pedestrian traffic. Add to that the fact of us having 90% pitbull mixes, and it's not easy to adopt scads of dogs out each week. A great week for us is five dogs. But now with being so full, like never before, we have to move more dogs than that or euthanizations will continue to happen with greater frequency. So several volunteers are scrambling to take dogs out that they feel they can board for a bit until they are adopted. I had a little money left over from what I collected from Olive and so I am applying it to Dixie. And I started another chip-in in case you would like to contribute. I'm not vetting Dixie yet, because she was spayed a few months ago when she had some interest by someone saying they wanted to adopt, and Olive had not been to the vet ever to my knowledge, so I feel she needed the full work up. Dixie's chip in will go towards her boarding, and we may need it. Adopting Olive out was relatively quick and I think luck had a lot to do with it. It may not be as easy this time around.
During this process I have built a relationship with a boarder, found a dog transport that can bring the dog(s) to the vet for me (Dixie did need a bordetella shot due to the plan to keep her in a kennel), and I worked out a lot of quirks. I also bought an "adopt me vest" that I never got to use on Olive when I took her to the park those times, so I will be using it with Dixie!
Here's Miss Dixie and her chip in: (she also has a facebook page here.)
So I hope now that I have added this to my life and worked out the initial panicking moments and newness, I can resume normal blogging. I have so many links I've sent to myself to share with you, and I hate to let the important news go by without even a mention. I'll try to do better!